Author Topic: Where do you keep toys?  (Read 429 times)

Offline swedishmaiden

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Where do you keep toys?
« on: March 16, 2012, 02:26:56 PM »
Dealing with a toddler who has limited capability to keep up with toy clean-up often means a messy house. I've tried to be as minimal as possible with toys, but they still pile up. Her favorites, like duplos and play food, get scattered everywhere.

Now that we're looking at the possibility of a new house, I'm trying to decide the best way to organize them. The new house has a living room on the main level with the kitchen and living room, bedrooms upstairs, and a playroom/family room in the basement. Jael's potential bedroom has a large walk-in closet, so I want to try a friend's idea of keeping toys sorted by category in plastic bins and getting one out at a time.

But I doubt she will want to just play in her room. So I'm thinking maybe I should keep some toys in the living room as well; that way she can play while I cook or whatever. The family room is all the way in the basement, so I'm not sure I want to bother with toys there until she and Judah are older and can run up and down the stairs with less supervision.

What do you do? Are your toddler's toys divided between rooms or just kept in one place? Any organizational tips?



Danae (24) & DH (28), Jael (3), and Judah (1)

Offline Katie

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Re: Where do you keep toys?
« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2012, 04:08:51 PM »
We keep all toys (other than a few larger one piece items like  the music table) in the playroom.  I use large ziplocks from Ikea to separate the smaller items (play food, puzzles, games, etc.) and TRY to only get a few out at a time.  This isn't very effective, though, as both of my kiddos are too little to do much picking up on their own. 

Honestly, the playroom tends to be a bit of a disaster during the week, but I've learned to be okay with it.  It's the play room - it's for play.  Play is messy.  Right?!  :)  Wish I could be of more help. 
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Offline carina

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Re: Where do you keep toys?
« Reply #2 on: March 16, 2012, 04:52:03 PM »
We keep all their toys in this in the dinning room with the exception of a small box of books, a couple stuffed animals, and dolls that stay on Cosette's bed.



It has since been labeled, so certain toys go in certain baskets (blocks in one, tea set/kitchen play in another, misc toys in another...) We're still getting used to the idea of only playing with the toys in one at a time, but even if they dump them all out it's still not too bad. I also have half of their toys put away in a box to switch out every few months.

If our kids ever do get their own room I'm thinking that I will still have their toys just out in the main area so their room stays just for sleeping, getting dressed, and some reading.
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Offline silverplurimi

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Re: Where do you keep toys?
« Reply #3 on: March 16, 2012, 05:01:27 PM »
I do keep toys in 2 separate places.  We have one storage place in the living room, which is where she most often plays.  When she plays upstairs (DH watches her up there while he works sometimes) we block off the hallway, and she has the run of his office and her room across the hall.  Her room has a smaller basket of toys and a bookshelf, but I don't put the small toys here because DH doesn't usually clean up after her, so whatever is available is scattered EVERYWHERE.  :)

I like Carina's idea, and that's the general concept of what our downstairs toy space is like.


Offline covigirl

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Re: Where do you keep toys?
« Reply #4 on: March 16, 2012, 05:01:30 PM »
My children are a bit older than yours, so this may not work for you yet. I have done it since my kids were that age, though. I keep toys in the basement and allow ONE type up at a time. My kids are old enough now to play in the basement most of the time, so that is usually a disaster area. I have one basket of baby toys upstairs, along with the books, games, and puzzles. I don't allow games out unless the living room is picked up and I try to allow ONE game out at a time, but that doesn't always work. This keeps the living area pretty neat or at least not much time to pick it up.

My mom never stored toys in our rooms, though she would allow one toy to be taken there to play with for a time, especially if 2-3 people wanted to play "alone". I think it is wise, because there is enough mess in my kids' room without toys. I find that I can control the toys coming up pretty well when they are stored in the basement. I don't stop them from getting out ALL the toys in the basement at once, so cleanup is usually a BIG job, but we only do that once every week or two.
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Re: Where do you keep toys?
« Reply #5 on: March 16, 2012, 05:23:31 PM »
We have books and puzzles in William's room (on shelves) and the dining room/living room area (in a toy box) but most toys are either in the den or the basement.  I try to keep the most-loved toys in the den which works out well for now, since that works for 90% of the time and then if we need a change of pace or I have laundry to do or whatever, then the basement toys are still fun and new and special.

Right now, the den has the Legos (in their plastic bucket), train set (in a wicker basket), and cars (which are right now stored in his train table).  William has a play rug, and most of the time he keeps whatever he's playing with on there (I make him pick up Legos that are anywhere else, since I don't want anyones stepping on them!), and he's actually VERY good now at putting away one set of toys before taking out the next.  I just remind him that we need to put away the cars to make more room for the train, or vise versa, and he's usually very compliant.

The basement is more of a free play mess area.  I only let him play with one board game at a time so that pieces don't get lost, and to play with them, the other things have to be picked up first (he can't reach the games on his own, so this usually is all I need to motivate him to clean up).  We have Little People stuff on bookshelves, and a shelf with bins for toys with small pieces, and a giant round tub for bigger toys, plus a few cabinets for stuffed animals and play kitchen supplies.

I'll see if I can dig up some pics later.

Offline Jen

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Re: Where do you keep toys?
« Reply #6 on: March 16, 2012, 05:57:14 PM »
I just recently moved all of DS's toys into his bedroom.  I love it.  I know things might change when he moves into the toddler bed but for now, it works out well, and my house stays pretty clean!  He does bring out a few toys here and there to play with and that's ok.... It's not nearly the mess of having everything out.

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Re: Where do you keep toys?
« Reply #7 on: March 16, 2012, 07:49:20 PM »
We keep his toys in our den. We all spend the majority of our time in the den and he doesn't really have any toys back in his bedroom since he's too little to want to head back there and play by himself (ha!). I do a toy rotation in that I have 10 toys out at a time and I keep the rest in the spare bedroom. I followed THIS post about limiting toys and it was SUPER helpful and that is what I'll keep doing from now on. I plan on rotating them every 2 weeks. I found a post on pinterest about a lady who has a system to rotate one box of toys each day and so they have a 4 day rotation which seems to work for their family. We clean up all of Logan's toys as part of his bedtime routine (he's pretty good about helping put stuff up like his blocks in a bin) and I also plan on having clean ups during the day before we leave the house for awhile or something like that so he gets in the habit of not leaving the house in a complete disaster which isn't fun to come home to. I usually only keep 2 puzzles at a time in order to help keep track of the pieces. When we get to more complicated toys with small parts/sets etc. I'll probably do gallon freezer bags or something to keep track of it all. I don't plan on having that many toys out to begin with so I probably won't be dealing as much with "put that toy up before you get another out" type of situation the way I plan on doing it. LOL :)

Offline swedishmaiden

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Re: Where do you keep toys?
« Reply #8 on: March 16, 2012, 08:43:59 PM »
I try to keep up with the evening tidy-up routine; some days are better than others. ;)

I like the idea of not storing toys in her room, in general, but in this new place, the huge walk-in closet is the best storage I have. :P I will put a protector-handle on it so she can't get in there herself. I think I will keep the extra toys there until we're ready to swap them out and then try covigirl's method of one type at a time.

Looking forward to getting into our own space here! I'm tired of renting. :P 


 

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